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Parents' Guide to

Harriet the Spy

By Stephany Aulenback, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 9+

Great young sleuth helps kids be true to themselves.

Harriet the Spy Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this book.

Community Reviews

age 11+

Based on 7 parent reviews

age 9+

Definately not a role model

I don't like the things Harriet says and the way she thinks about people, even saying her own mother his dumb. She refers to people as fat as well. This is not proper or kind and not accepted in our household.
age 13+
Curse words present The child cusses at her parents and says some terrible things. Not a good role model.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (7 ):
Kids say (12 ):

This book is honest in its portrayal of the desperation and loneliness Harriet feels -- first, when her nanny leaves her and, later, when her friends turn against her. Girls, in particular, will identify with Harriet's strong drive to be true to herself in this longtime children's favorite.

Best of all, while HARRIET THE SPY deals with tough problems, such as how to deal with peer rejection and how to carry on without a beloved friend, it also manages, thanks to author Louise Fitzhugh's keen sense of the ridiculous, to be cheerful and often hilarious. Readers may even be inspired to start keeping their own notebooks -- though they shouldn't be so zealous as she is.

Book Details

  • Author: Louise Fitzhugh
  • Genre: Humor
  • Book type: Fiction
  • Publisher: Yearling Books
  • Publication date: October 1, 1964
  • Publisher's recommended age(s): 9 - 12
  • Number of pages: 298
  • Last updated: July 12, 2017

Did we miss something on diversity?

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